Sunday, February 28, 2010

Day 13: Changing Table

It's the craziest thing in the world.  My kids love having their diapers changed.  They will be so fussy sometimes but the second I put them on the changing table they start smiling.  Tonight I started using it to my advantage.  Chase was so fussy for about an hour.  I patted, rocked, did his favorite football hold, sang, put him in his favorite bouncy chair, gave him his bink, but nothing worked until I put him on the changing table.  My fussy boy turned to a happy boy and started smiling and talking. 

Tonight I am very grateful for the changing table.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Day 12: Anne

She moves faster than a speeding bullet, has more energy than a person who just drank 100 Red Bulls and can accomplish more in one day than I can the whole year. That’s my cousin Anne. She flew in yesterday to spend a long weekend with us and meet the babies. Anne has been such a blessing to us. Today she made us her homemade spaghetti sauce (SO GOOD) that will last our family probably 5 meals, she made my favorite meal mostacolli for dinner, 3 kinds of my favorite cookies, and caramel candies all while talking to her family back in VA, catching up with me, helping with the babies and watching the Olympics. She is the Queen of Multi-tasking. We have truly been blessed to have her here. She has taught me so much about being a great Mom as I have watched her be such an incredible Mom to her 4 boys. I admire and respect her.

I’m grateful today for Anne coming to visit.

I love this picture because it is typical Anne having a fun time doing the everyday of life.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Day 11: Encouraging Words

Over the last 11 days of starting this project many people have gotten behind me with such encouraging words. Encouraging words to me are like gas for my tank, they keep me going. After getting some encouragement I feel like I can conquer the world. My love language is definitely words of affirmation. When I was working with the kids in the after school program I would constantly remind them of the power of their words. I would say, "Your words are powerful and you have the opportunity to make people feel really good with your words or to make them feel really bad with your words." Words can be life and death. I don't want to take for granted the life that encouraging words bring. So no matter how many times my husband says, "I love you" I will treat it like the first and when he says, "you're beautiful" I will force myself to believe him, when people say "I'm amazing" I will start to live like I'm amazing and when they say, "you are a great mom" I will walk confidently knowing I'm a great mom. I want to be a person that receives the life that encouraging words give. Like when the Lord says, "You are more than a conqueror." I want to live like I can conquer this world.

Today I am grateful for encouraging words.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Day 10: Healthy Babies

January 2009 I was so excited I called Phil at work and said, "I'm coming to have lunch with you." When he finally got to the car I was too excited to hold it in any longer and I handed him the pregnancy test. There it was clear as day...I was pregnant. We were so excited! We went to lunch and called all of our closest friends and shared the good news. We were starting our family and we couldn't be more excited. Over the next days the excitement grew as I made a doctor’s appointment and even bought a couple things for the baby. It was 9 days after that exciting afternoon that I lost that little baby. In 9 days I had already fallen head over heals for this little one and now she (I believe it was a girl) was gone. I wanted her so much but never even got to meet her.

After that we were surer than ever that we wanted to start our family. And it was March 2009 that I took another pregnancy test and found out we were pregnant again. We were excited but a little apprehensive. I went out and bought a baby a blanket in faith believing that I would hold him in it. I wanted him to know I loved him from the start even if I was a little scared. It was 5 days later that we found out we lost him (I believe it was a boy) too. I didn't know if I ever would recover after that. My heart was broken and discouragement had set in. All I could say to the Lord was help. Help me get through this. Help us get through this. Just help.

We sought out some specialist doctors to help find out what the problem was and what this meant for our future, but it was too late. I was pregnant again. When I took the pregnancy test and saw I was pregnant I just started crying and said, "Lord, I can't do this again." I didn't even believe it was going to happen. No Dr. would see me before I was 6 weeks and I didn't think I would make it that long. So I braced myself for the worse. But I made it to the appointment and they ordered an 8 week ultrasound. I thought I wouldn't make it to that, but then I did. The Sonogram Technician put the jelly on my tummy and put that thing on to see the baby and she said, "Well two miscarriages now two babies!" Phil and I screamed, hugged and cried as we thanked the Lord. We found out that day that the Lord's promise is true. He will give back everything the devil has stolen. He gave us the double portion...a boy and a girl.

Today I am grateful for two healthy babies.  Our visit to the Pediatrician today confirms it!

Chase weighing in at 11 lbs 15.5 oz

Zaya weighing in at 10 lbs 9.5 oz.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Day 9: Learning Something New

Hi, I'm Jaime and I am a creative junkie. I believe my sanity lies somewhere in the midst of a creative project. If I don't have something I'm working on I feel as though I might go crazy. I have dabbled in acrylic painting, scrapbooking (both paper and digital), graphic design, home decorating, decoupage, refinishing, photography (both digital and film) and all other kinds of crafts. I wouldn't say I'm a master at any of them, but like I said it's where I feel most me. I have a dreams list of things I want to do in my life and on there are a couple more creative endeavors. Things like learning how to blow glass, write a book one day, and learn how to sew.

Yesterday, my mother-in-law, the master of all sewing (at least in my book) started teaching me how to sew. I'm so excited for all the possibilities this brings into my creative world and my husband is excited someone in the house will be able to fix his pants again. I know I have a lot still to learn, but that's what makes it fun. Next week Joyce is bringing me a project. I'll keep you updated on my progress. I’ll be crossing that off my dreams list any day now.

Today I'm grateful I am learning the art of sewing.

I proudly display some of my first stiches...

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Day 8: A Daddy

One of my biggest struggles as a little girl was not having a Dad.  I remember as a child dreaming what he would be like, how he would play with me, how he would hold me and protect me. It was a constant thought on my mind. I knew even as a young child that I was missing out on a really special relationship. I would imagine him twirling me around and letting me dance on his feet and I even imagined him walking me down the aisle one day. I didn't know what he looked like though so whenever I would get to his face in my day dreaming it would be blank and I was left heartbroken once again. When I was 19 years old I somehow gained the courage to find him. I found him in the phone book (The simplest solution to a life of heart ache). My Dad and I got in contact, but I believe it was too late for us. He had a wife and a son that were his family and there wasn't much room for me. How was he supposed to be a Dad to a 19 year old? A question I knew the answer to but he never wanted to find out. My heart still at times aches for that relationship. I wonder what it would have been like growing up with a Dad to watch out for me and protect me.

I'm grateful today that my children will always have a Daddy. This has truly been such a gift for me as I watch their relationship grow each day. They both have a special relationship with Daddy. Dad does the fun stuff with them like the move we fondly call the "diaper crane", and he slides, bounces and flies like the best roller coaster. Every day he comes home from work and spends time just talking with them. He really knows them so well, what they like and how they act. It's fun to hear him talk about them to, how he is excited to go camping with Chase and take Zaya on Daddy dates. He is a great Dad. My kids will never have to imagine what it would be like to have a Daddy because they have the best one. Because of Daddy they will always know they are taken care of and loved. They will always feel safe.

Today I'm grateful my children will always know there Daddy.

Here they are sporting their favorite Daddy gear...

Daddy and Chase

Daddy and Zaya

Monday, February 22, 2010

Day 7: Sleep

This is my bed, a place I have spent very little time over the last 12 weeks, but a place my heart desires greatly. I have been amazed over the past 12 weeks how dependent we are on sleep. That it's a necessity to live a sane life. The first couple of weeks the babies were here I literally felt like I was going crazy. My emotions were on the wildest rollercoaster I had ever been on and my productivity was at an all time low. Sleep was at the top of my list of things to pray for. I desperately needed it!

I have been working my hardest the last month or two on getting the babies on a good schedule so that hopefully they would start sleeping more in the night. Well, all my hard work is beginning to pay off. Last night BOTH of my babies went to bed at 8:30pm slept until 4am then went back down after a feeding until 9am. WooHoo!! I feel like a new woman today.

Today I'm grateful for a great night’s sleep!!!

Just for fun here are some old pics of my sleeping beauties

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Day 6: Worship

Don't tell anyone but I often go around the house singing silly songs. Before my kids came I would sing silly made up songs to my dog about how great she is. Now most of my silly songs are about Zaya and Chase and how much I love them or how beautiful they are. I love to sing! I have been singing my heart out since I was a little girl. But there is nothing like worshipping.  Really worshipping, giving the Lord all of myself, singing my heart out and dancing without concern of how I sound or what I look like.  I love worshipping the Lord!

Sometimes by the time Sunday hits I feel like I NEED to worship. I just need to praise the Lord. Throw all inhibitions out the door and worship. I was caught up today as I felt the Lord's presence so intimately during worship. I began to think what a blessing it is to worship and how awesome it is that we even can. God is the creator of the heavens and the earth, He is the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords, He is the Great I am and I am blown away that he would accept my worship. Since I have become a mother I have never been more aware of my selfishness, of my inadequacies, of my sin and I was blown away today that the Lord accepts my worship. Not only does He accept it but my worship blesses Him. Me, with all my inadequacies, all my selfishness and all my sin am able to bless the Lord.

I'm grateful today I can worship the Lord!

Just a note...I didn't forget the rules. This is a self portrait and because of this I was able to learn some new things about my camera. So fun! Thanks for all the support. I'm loving the encouragement.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Day 5: Seeing something other than the walls of my house

I love my house don't get me wrong.  It will actually probably be one of my days things to be grateful for, but for today I was glad to be out of it.  The walls of my house are pretty much all I see since I have become a mom because quite frankly just thinking about all that they need to go out and contimplating whether or not they will be in a good mood makes me exhausted.  And it's even more exhausting when you finally do get out and they decide their not in the good mood you convinced yourself they would be in. 

It was such a gorgeous day out that I had to get out no matter the cost.  We packed the babies up and went on our annual strawberry shortcake venture to Plant City.  We ate our giant size strawberry shortcake, took a walk in downtown Plant City, hit up some antique shops and found a pretty cool car show.  It was one of those days you venture out and you see what happens.  I love those kind of days!  It was a great day hanging out with my family. 

Today I'm grateful I got out of the house.  It can be done with twins!!!


Friday, February 19, 2010

Day 4: Being Known

Okay don't write me off as crazy just yet.  I'm not grateful my babies cry.  These pics actually break my heart, but what I'm grateful for is I know their cries.  If I am in a different room then them and one starts crying about 95% of the time I can tell who's crying.  I know them.  I know Chase's favorite relaxing place is his bouncy chair and I know Zaya loves to just walk around the house with Mommy.  I know a couple of things, but I pray I cna really know them.  To know what they need, to know how to teach them best, know what makes them happy, and what makes them sad.  I want to know them.  Probably one of the hardest things in being a Mom is when they are crying and you don't know.  You don't know what is causing them such distress but if you did you would do it a million times no matter how uncomfortable it makes you.  To know them is such a gift. 

As I have reflected on this desire to know my children Psalm 139 has come alive to me.  The Lord knows me.  He knows when I sit and when I stand, He knows my words before I say them, all of my thoughts and desires.  He knows me.  I am grateful to be known by my God.  He knows what I need so I can trust that I will be taken care of.  But just as I long so much for my children to just tell me what they need I am keenly aware now that God longs for us to tell him what we need.  Even though he knows us he longs for us to just tell him.  It's an amazing gift that the God of the universe knows me and he wants to continue knowing me more everyday as I talk with him. 

I am grateful today that God knows my cry and He longs to hear it. 

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Day 3: The Gift of Relaxation

For the last 11 weeks of my life one of the challenges of the day is just getting a shower.  I remember when I would take long leisurly showers that made me so relaxed I would feel like a new woman.  I didn't realize at the time how much of a gift that was.  A shower is something to be grateful for.  It still is one of the highlights of my day it just looks a little differently then it used to.  Now it has a monitor attached and usually ends abruptly with a baby crying in need.  Oh well it still is a little relaxing and I have learned to not take such a great relaxing thing for granted. 

Over the past 11 weeks my husband must have heard my need for some relaxation or he might have heard my constant complaints of back, shoulder and neck pain. (Carrying twins for 9 months sure has done a number on my body.)  Whatever it was he heard right and did what he could.  He gave his valentine an hour massage for Valentine's Day.  I'm so excited!  My appointment is for tonight and I can't wait.  I feel like a kid going to Disneyland for the first time.  I have had massages before but have never had this desperate need for some relaxation.  Being a Mom is hard work.  It's the hardest thing I have ever done, but also the most rewarding.  So today I'm grateful for an hour of relaxation that won't end abruptly with a baby crying in need. 

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Day 2: Crutch Propped on Wall

I know it's not the most exciting picture in the world, but this picture means alot to me.  For the last 2 weeks my husband has been propping this crutch underneath his arm to hold hold him up because he hurt his back.  It broke my heart to see my big, tough husband in so much pain he couldn't even walk.  I think what broke him even more then the pain was not being able to do anything.  My husband is a servant.  He serves and gives with his whole heart just to bless people.  He truly is the hardest worker I know and taking that away from him was like taking a part of him away.  He wasn't himself and I missed him.  During this time I became grateful that this soon shall pass.  He will be restored fully and back to his old self.  Some women can't say the same, they are taking care of disabled husbands, parents or children.  It's the everyday things we take for granted like using our body and doing mennial tasks on our own. 

So today I'm grateful for a healthy husband, because today the crutch is propped on the wall and not under his arm. 

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Day 1: A Great Smile

My daughter just recently started to smile in response to me.  I'll just start talking to her and she just smiles and smiles over and over again. This has got to be one of the best gifts God could give.  I'm convinced she knows her Mama.  She's knows she's loved and taken care of.  I'm so grateful for her smile. 

My beautiful daughter at 11 weeks old.

PROJECT: Candidly Grateful

I recently embarked on the biggest adventure of my life when I had my twins.  They were born Nov 30, 2009 and they really are such a joy.  However, over the last 11 weeks one thing is true life can get lost in taking care of babies.  Monotony started to set in after about a week of feeding babies, changing diapers, and rocking to sleep.  Cabin fever shortly followed. 
So to fight the monotony and the cabin fever I have assigned myself a project.  This project is supposed to get me out of the house, challenging myself in an art I love, photography and keep my heart focused on the many things I am so blessed by.  PROJECT: Candidly Grateful.  For 365 days I will post a picture on my blog of something I am grateful for. 

1. Picture must be taken by me, Jaime. 
2. The picture can not be used more then once. 
3.  The thing I am grateful for can not be used more then once.(Otherwise you would have 365 pictures of my husband and my kids.)  However, It can be something more specific about something I've already used. For example; I'm grateful for my daughter. Later, I could say I'm grateful for her learning to crawl.
4.  Must post everyday unless a major emergency happens which will have to be explained upon returning to blog.  (This will be the hardest for me!)

I'm really excited about this project.  I welcome the accountability and encouragement of anyone who cares to read.